NEW YORK, NY — Panthera, the global wild cat conservation organization, today announced that it has convened more than 60 of the most respected figures from the worlds of business, law enforcement, government, fashion, media, entertainment, tourism, the military, and the arts in its Conservation Council, a global advisory board.
In a commitment of service unprecedented in the conservation community for its diverse scope and potential impact on the preservation of the world’s wild cats and their critical ecosystems, influential leaders in multiple fields, including Jeremy Irons, General David Petraeus, Sir Norman Rosenthal, and artist Maya Lin, have joined forces to save the world’s most charismatic wildlife.
Glenn Close and Jane Alexander, renowned stars of stage and screen and committed conservationists, will chair the Conservation Council, which, with its collective reach and influence, creates a conservation juggernaut to be unleashed on saving the world’s vanishing wild cats and their landscapes.
Ms. Close said, “For the millions of people around the globe who refuse to envision a future without wild cats and the wild places they need to thrive, we have Panthera. I am so proud to be a part of this wonderful organization that is standing squarely between big cats and the perilous threats they face—a global protective force that is turning the tide for our most iconic and vulnerable species. It's no wonder that Panthera has attracted so many leading figures to its cause; they know that you must be smart and fearless to confront and solve the world’s most intractable challenges and Panthera is both.”
Ms. Alexander added, “When we think of freedom, when we envision the great predators that roam the forests, the mountains and the savannahs, the tiger comes to mind, the lion, the jaguar and the leopard. It is thrilling to share our planet with them. And as top predators they keep it in balance.
But all wild cats today are threatened by human incursion, every single one of them, and some are on the brink of extinction. Panthera works to save them through keeping their habitats in tact, ending poaching, and ensuring healthy genetics for future generations. I am proud to be helping this remarkable organization. If there is a future for great cats it is in the hands of Panthera and its partners globally.”
Members of the Conservation Council provide Panthera with actionable advice on a wide variety of topics fundamental to the growth and development of the organization, including strategy and operational planning, communications, and expansion of Panthera’s network. The Council members’ global reach into the worlds of public policy, media, and entertainment will serve to extend Panthera’s message to new audiences and open up new avenues of support.
Dr. Thomas Kaplan, Chairman of Panthera’s Board of Directors, said, “Panthera is extremely humbled and fortunate to have access to the wide-ranging and deep expertise of this august body of individuals. Though diverse in their vocations, geographies, and worldviews, they are united by their shared optimism that together we can change the course of cat conservation and realize the cascading benefits on all species that come from saving the “umbrella species” that the cats represent in their critical landscapes. We are extraordinarily grateful for their selfless commitment to Panthera’s mission and know that our efforts to protect wild cats around the world will benefit greatly from their guidance and collective passion.”
Among the Council’s members are some of the most notable names in their respective fields, including singer Shania Twain and leading conservationists Kris Tompkins, former CEO of Patagonia, as well as Fashion Week founder Fern Mallis, author Wilbur Smith, ProPublica’s Andrew Revkin, the BBC’s Kate Silverton, and MSNBC political analyst Nicolle Wallace, to name a few.
Dr. Alan Rabinowitz, CEO of Panthera, said, “It’s a testament to the universal allure of wild cats, and the urgency of their plight, that we are able to convene this extraordinary gathering of minds. Gratefully, we look forward to drawing upon their talents to increase our impact and advance our mission.”
Hermès Artistic Director, Pierre-Alexis Dumas, said, “Panthera’s commitment to rigorous science, and their unique understanding of man’s complex relationship with big cats, promises hope for these iconic animals.”
Appointees to the Conservation Council are voted on to the Council by Panthera’s Board of Directors for their ability to provide valuable expertise and guidance that complements the skills of Panthera’s boards and staff. Panthera is also guided by its Scientific Council, made up of some of the world’s leading cat biologists, which advises the organization on science and policy matters.
Award-winning Singer and Songwriter and Panthera Global Leopard Ambassador, Shania Twain, said, "The image and spirit of the leopard is an inspiration to millions around the world, including myself. I feel privileged to give back to a creature that depends for its future on what we do now to save it… and I urge the wider world to join Panthera and me in this mission."
Jane Alexander Chair Dedicated Conservationist Award-winning Actress of Screen and Stage
Abeer Al-Otaiba Businessperson and Philanthropist Founder and Creative Director of the designer line SemSem
H.E. Yousef Al-Otaiba Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates to the United States
Tom Anderson Producer, formerly of CBS' 60 Minutes
Ruth Brenner Philanthropist and Conservationist
Ambassador Antonin Baudry Author and Entrepreneur Former Ambassador for Culture and President of the Institut Français
Jean-François Camilleri President, Echo Studio
Celina Chien Photojournalist and Conservationist
Ally Coulter Designer, Ally Coulter Design
Ian Craig Wildlife Conservationist Co-Founder Lewa Wildlife Conservancy and the Northern Rangelands Trust
Frédéric Dallet Collector Custodian of the estate of the artist Robert Dallet
Itzhak Dar Security Analysis and Intelligence Shafran Consulting and Management
Francois Delattre Secretary General of France's Ministry of European and Foreign Affairs Former Ambassador of France to the U.S. and the U.N.
Jean Doumanian Stage, Film, and Television Producer Jean Doumanian Productions
Pierre-Alexis Dumas Artistic Director, Hermès
Susan Engel Director and Executive Producer, 92Y Talks
Ali Erfan Businessman and Philanthropist Founder and Chairman, the Cogito Scholarship Foundation
Yvan-Lledo Ferrer Intelligence College in Europe
Sally Fischer Branding Strategist and Cause Activist Sally Fischer Public Relations
Jane Fraser Philanthropist President of the Stuttering Foundation of America
Yanina Fuertes Entrepreneur and Conservationist CEO, Corso Como, Inc.
Rick Gerson Hedge Fund Manager Chairman, Falcon Edge Capital
Loïc Gouzer Conservation Activist Former Deputy Chairman, Post-War and Contemporary Art, Christie's
Ben Hall Chairman, Americas at Christie's
Jennifer Hall Vice-President of Client Development, Christie's
Charles Hansard Investor Board Member, Moore Global Investments Ltd.
Stan Herman Fashion Designer Past President of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) Co-creator of New York Fashion Week
Richard Hurowitz Publisher, The Octavian Report
Sharon Hurowitz Curator and Art Advisor Coplan Hurowitz Art Advisory
Jeremy Irons Award Winning Actor of Screen and Stage
Geoffrey Kent Travel Entrepreneur Chairman and CEO, Abercrombie and Kent
Mohamed Khashoggi Writer, Conservationist Chairman, M K Associates
Dr. Paul Klotman President and CEO, Baylor College of Medicine
Stephen S. Lash Chairman Emeritus, Christie's Americas Chairman Emeritus, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University
Aurélien Lechevallier Diplomatic Advisor to the President of France
H.E. Jean-David Levitte Former Ambassador of France to the U.S and the U.N. Former Head of the National Security Council
Michael Levy Founder and CEO, The Levy Production Group
James Lieber Strategic Consulting Founder, Lieber Strategies
Maya Lin Artist, Designer and Conservationist Maya Lin Studio
Fern Mallis Creator of New York Fashion Week and the Fashion Icon series President of Fern Mallis LLC
Dr. Bassem Masri Director of Preventive Cardiology, Weill Cornell Medical Center
Edith McBean Dedicated Conservationist
Dr. John Mitchell Chair of theBoard of Trustees for Bat Conservation International and World Land Trust-USA Former Executive Secretary and Chairman of the Beneficia Foundation
Katherine Mitchell Artist, Nature Enthusiast
Wendi Deng Murdoch Businessperson, Investor, and Film Producer
Otto Naumann Art Historian Senior Vice President and Client Development Director, Sotheby’s
H. E. Lana Nusseibeh Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations
H. Merritt Paulson, III CEO, Portland Timbers
General David Petraeus Director of the KKR Global Institute Four Star General (Ret.), Commander and Strategist, US Army
Jonathan Powell Diplomat and Author CEO, Inter Mediate Former Chief of Staff to the Prime Minister Tony Blair
Arnaud de Puyfontaine CEO, Vivendi
Andrew Revkin Strategic Advisor for Environmental and Science Journalism, National Geographic Society Former reporter for The New York Times and Senior Fellow for Environmetnal Understanding, Pace University
Alex Rosenberg Founder and CEO, Originals Former Business Executive, Kanye West and Yeezy
Sir Norman Rosenthal Curator and Art Historian Former Exhibitions Secretary, The Royal Academy
Andy Sabin Entrepreneur and Conservationist Chairman, Sabin Metal Corporation, and Founder, Andrew Sabin Family Foundation
Jaqui Safra Investor, Collector, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist
Luana Saghieh Cat Conservationist Foreign Affairs and Policy Professional, U.S. Government
Lord Sarfraz Member of the House of Lords
HRH Princess Reema Bandar Al Saud Ambassador to the United States for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Dr. Claudio Segré Economist and Banker Founder, Fondation Segré
Vance Serchuk Eecutive Director of the KKR Global Institute Former Senior Foreign Policy Adviser to Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) Officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve
Nina Siemiatkowski Wildlife Photographer and Marketing Advisor to Conservation Organizations
Kate Silverton Journalist Anchor for BBC News
Wilbur Smith Author and Philanthropist Founder, Wilbur Smith Foundation
Daisy Soros Philanthropist Chairman of the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans
Lieutenant-Colonel Timothy Spicer, OBE Strategist Founder of Aegis Defense Services
Michael Steinhardt Philanthropist and Financier Chairman, The Wisdom Tree
Steven Stone Attorney and Conservationist Activist Partner, Rubin, Winston, Diercks, Harris & Cooke, LLP
Amanda Tapiero Art Educator and Collector
Frédéric Thiébaud Business Executive CEO, The Shania Kids Can Foundation
Baron Lorne Thyssen-Bornemisza Collector, Investor, and Entrepreneur Founder, Kallos Gallery
Henry Timms CEO and President, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Founder of #GivingTuesday
Kris Tompkins Philanthropist and Entrepreneur Founder and President, Conservación Patagónica Former CEO of Patagonia, Inc.
Rhett Turner Film maker and Conservationist
Shania Twain Award-winning Singer and Songwriter Philanthropist and Advocate for Children's Education and Empowerment
Johnny Van Haeften Fine Art Dealer Johnny Van Haeften Ltd.
Eric Vincent President, Sarissa Capital Management
Nicolle Wallace Political Analyst and Television News Anchor, MSNBC
Ambassador Mark Wallace Former US Ambassador to the UN, Representative for UN Management and Reform
Diana Walters Strategic Advisor in the Natural Resources Industry
Thom Wayne Founder Sigma Capital Partners Chief of Strategy Chabad on Campus